NCAA BK

Sat, Mar 7, 2009 - 8:00 PM ET
Game Recap
 

UTEP 59, Southern Miss. 56

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HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP)

Derrick Caracter and Randy Culpepper scored 17 points each and Texas-El Paso survived a scare to beat Southern Mississippi 59-56 on Wednesday night.

The Miners (21-5, 12-1 Conference USA) led 58-53 after Caracter's jumper from the top of the key with 53 seconds left, but a 3-pointer by Gary Flowers, who led Southern Miss with 15 points, made it 58-56 six seconds later.

Angelo Johnson got a steal for the Golden Eagles (16-11, 6-7) on the ensuing possession, but a couple of missed jumpers gave the ball back to UTEP. Culpepper's free throw with 13 seconds left gave the Miners their final margin.

Southern Miss' Josimar Ayarza's 3-point attempt at the buzzer rimmed out.

UTEP opened the second half with a 15-6 run to lead 45-35 with 10:32 left. But Southern Miss wouldn't go away, putting together an 18-6 run in the final 7:36 to keep the game close.

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